Time to tie up a couple of loose ends from the past week, starting with a mini-review of The Badlands: more stories from Midnight in Peking by Paul French.
Earlier this week it was announced that China now has over 800 million Internet users – more than the population of every other county on the planet except for India. That represents a penetration rate of 57.7% according to the China Internet Network Information Center. Over 98% of the users go online with a smart phone; 566 million use mobile payments.
Back home in Taipei. My trip to Beijing certainly gave me plenty of food for thought. Judging by the size of my stomach, a tad too much perhaps!
Luckin has been gaining a lot of attention recently thanks to cleverly positioning itself as the plucky young David fighting to unseat the Starbucks goliath in the China coffee market. Except of course, having closed a $200 million funding round that gives it a $1 billion valuation, the company is hardly a little guy at all and has already opened over 500 outlets throughout the country.
An intense start to this year’s China Children’s Computer Contest sponsored by VIA and HTC. Today the venue moves to the gymnasium at Beihang University for the maker segment of the event.
Another perfect summer evening stroll, this time after over-indulging in the sweetest and tenderest ribs of lamb that I can ever recall eating at the Xibei Youmiancun Restaurant (西贝莜面村) in Wudaokou.
Always a pleasure to be back in Beijing. Yesterday, I enjoyed a perfect summer evening strolling around the Wudaokou neighborhood and soaking in the atmosphere. A good job I had no need to brave the rush-hour subway. People Mountain, People Sea!
One of the great pleasures of visiting Beijing in winter is going out for a spicy lamb hot pot to fight off the freezing cold. The hot and noisy atmosphere in the restaurants helps to raise the spirits further. This is the China that I love to experience, with everybody sat round the tables merrily chatting, eating, and drinking after a hard day’s grind at the office. Nothing can beat it!
My first overseas trip of the year – to the crisp cold of Beijing rather than the pouring rain of Las Vegas. This is the view from my apartment this morning. It’s always a great pleasure, not to mention a huge relief, to see clear blue skies over the city. A perfect winter’s day is promised.
Dockless bike sharing services have become such a fixture of the streets of China’s cities that municipal governments are finally taking steps to rein in the most egregious aspects of anti-social behavior by inconsiderate users who simply leave their contraption anywhere when they have reached their destination. Judging by some of the sights I came across during my recent trip to Shanghai and Beijing, they are starting to make some progress – but they still have some way to go before they take back the streets. Continue reading Dockless bike sharing services: a light-touch approach